Ideas and Tips to motivate communication

Communicative temptations involves setting up the environment, so as to create a need to force the user to communicate. A child is much more likely to communicate if he has a reason for doing so! Let’s look at a few ideas to motivate communication.

IDEAS for motivating communication

  • Place a favourite object out of reach. Then wait for the child to react. 
  • Offer a little bit of his favourite food (e.g. cookies). Then wait …
  • Hide one of his shoes while getting ready to go out. Then wait …
  • Choose an activity that he can’t do without your help (Take out the batteries from his favourite toy). Then wait..
  • Change a familiar activity and do it incorrectly. E.g. Put the socks on his hands . Then wait
  • When things go wrong, don’t talk (When juice spills on the floor). Then wait …
  • Give your child a visual clue and wait – could be an object that you want your child to recognise. Then wait..
  • Pause or change a familiar activity – and wait. When you pause, make sure your child knows it is his turn. 

Mealtime ideas

  • Place a favorite food item in a clear container that your child cannot open. Put the container in front of him and wait for him to request you to open it for him. 
  • Eat your child’s favorite food item in front of him, without offering him any. Give an opportunity for the child to request, and then model requesting if the child does not request.
  • Offer a food item that your child dislikes, giving the child an opportunity to reject or protest. 
  • Place your child’s hands in a cold, wet or sticky substance, such as jello, pudding or paste. Watch his reaction and wait for his protest.
  • Engage your child in an activity with something that can be easily spilled (or dropped, broken, torn, etc.). Suddenly spill some of the substance on the table or floor and wait.
  • Tempt your child by having his favourite cookies (or any food items) within his sight, but out of reach. Wait for him to request for it.
  • Motivate your child to communicate by leaving out necessary items that are needed to complete a task. E.g. giving ice cream in a cup, without a spoon.

Reading time ideas

  • Motivate communication by leaving out necessary items required to complete a task. Give your child a book with no crayons and wait for his reaction to request for crayons.
  • Get ready to read your child’s favorite book, open the book, then look away or start doing something else. Wait for his reaction.
  • Keep your child’s favorite book, within his sight, but out of his reach and ask if he wants to read. If yes, don’t get it, but wait for him to ask for it.
  • When it is reading time, hold the book upside down and wait for his reaction.
  • When reading an interesting part of the story, abruptly close the book and wait for him to ask. 

While playing in the park

  • Play a running game. Call “Ready, Set, Go”. On “Go” run along with your child. Practice this regularly until it becomes a routine. Then one fine day, say “Ready, Steady” and do not complete it with “Go”. Wait for your child to call “Go” before running.
  • Make your child sit on the swing and do not push it. Wait for him to ask for it.
  • Get into a routine to “catch” and “throw” the ball. Repeat it alternately. Then suddenly stop and wait for him to ask for it.
  • Tell your child that you will play bat and ball. Hide the ball. Give him the bat and ask him to start playing. Wait for him to ask for the ball.
  • Take him to a see-saw and say “up” when he goes up and “down” when he comes down in a routine tone. Take him up and don’t bring him down until he asks for it. 

While watching TV

  • Call your child to watch his favorite show. Turn on the TV and hide the remote control. Wait for him to ask for it.
  • While your child is absorbed in his favorite show, mute the volume abruptly and discreetly. Now wait for your child to express himself.
  • While your child is watching his favorite TV show, abruptly turn off the TV. Wait for him to ask you to turn it on.
  • While your child is watching his favorite show, suddenly go and stand in front of him, blocking the screen. Wait for him to protest.

While shopping

  • While getting ready to go shopping, put the socks on his hands instead of his legs and wait for his reaction.
  • Once you get back after shopping, put away any items you bought for him, and wait for him to ask you for it.
  • While getting ready to go shopping, help him put on his shoes without putting his socks on and wait for his reaction.
  • Leave the shopping cart in a corner of the shop and ask your child to go and drop the items there each time.
  • Take him to a section which has an item that he doesn’t like. Pick up the item and tell him that you are buying it for him. And wait for him to protest. 

Hope you liked this blog about ideas to motivate communication. Please leave your feedback in the comment section below.

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